|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Study of a Woman by Honore de Balzac:
not help blushing. The young baron saw that sudden color. If the most
humble-minded man retains in the depths of his soul a certain conceit
of which he never rids himself, any more than a woman ever rids
herself of coquetry, who shall blame Eugene if he did say softly in
his own mind: "What! that fortress, too?" So thinking, he posed in his
cravat. Young men may not be grasping but they like to get a new coin
in their collection.
Monsieur de Listomere seized the "Gazette de France," which he saw on
the mantelpiece, and carried it to a window, to obtain, by
journalistic help, an opinion of his own on the state of France.
A woman, even a prude, is never long embarrassed, however difficult
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Hiero by Xenophon:
guards for pay like harvest labourers. Now of all functions, all
abilities, none, I presume, is more required of a guard than that of
faithfulness; and yet one faithful man is a commodity more hard to
find than scores of workmen for any sort of work you like to name;
and the more so, when the guards in question are not forthcoming
except for money's sake; and when they have it in their power to
get far more in far less time by murdering the despot than they can
hope to earn by lengthened service in protecting him.
 Or, "beyond the sentinels themselves is set the outpost of the
laws, who watch the watch."
 Or, "ten-day labourers in harvest-time."
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Secret Places of the Heart by H. G. Wells:
position of being a rich married woman in New York. That was
why I became engaged to Lake. He seemed to be as good a man
as there was about. He said he adored me and wanted me to
crown his life. He wasn't ill-looking or ill-mannered. The
second main streak in my nature wouldn't however fit in with
She stopped short.
"The second streak, " said Sir Richmond.
"Oh!--Love of beauty, love of romance. I want to give things
their proper names; I don't want to pretend to you. . . . It
was more or less than that. . . . It was--imaginative
|The fourth excerpt represents the element of Earth. It speaks of physical influences and the impact of the unseen on the visible world, and is drawn from Merry Men by Robert Louis Stevenson:
seeing eyes, haunted me in that sunny, solitary place, not like a
spectre, but like some friend whom I had basely injured. Was the
great treasure ship indeed below there, with her guns and chain and
treasure, as she had sailed from Spain; her decks a garden for the
seaweed, her cabin a breeding place for fish, soundless but for the
dredging water, motionless but for the waving of the tangle upon
her battlements - that old, populous, sea-riding castle, now a reef
in Sandag Bay? Or, as I thought it likelier, was this a waif from
the disaster of the foreign brig - was this shoe-buckle bought but
the other day and worn by a man of my own period in the world's
history, hearing the same news from day to day, thinking the same